Dry Fasting vs Water Fasting

Answered on February 04, 2016
Created December 19, 2012 at 10:15 AM

Is there any evidence that fasting without water is better than with? I have read things like 'one day of dry fasting is better than 3 days of water fasting', but can this be true? If it were, what is the logic? I thought water was used to clear out the body?



on August 16, 2013
at 05:12 AM

This doesn't address why you would want to dry fast in the first place.



on December 19, 2012
at 03:55 PM

Can you link us to where you read that? Sounds pretty bogus to me.

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10 Answers


on December 19, 2012
at 01:09 PM

Going without water is a very bad idea. There are no health benefits from it, only risks. People can die after just a few days without water in hot weather. It's an extremely stupid thing to do.

Abstaining from food is entirely different thing. It causes beneficial physiological effects including high ketosis, low blood sugar, and loss of fat.

Abstaining from water doesn't increase the effects of fasting; it only hurts you and may even kill you.


on October 30, 2014
at 04:20 PM

You are clearly an uncredable source given that you said "There are no health benefits from it".  There are undoubtelby beneftis from dry fasting over water fasting such as parasitic elemination to name one.  Paleoithic peoples tracked herds of animals for weeks at a time.  Do you really think they had fresh streams available to them during all/most of their hunts. Dry fasting is powerful beyond believe, I've tried.  Don't shun it, if you've been to scared to ever try it. 


on October 30, 2014
at 04:33 PM

@Smurfypoo12 Dry fasting is dangerous, pseudoscientific quackery that only an idiot with no knowledge of how the human body work would ever attempt. It's hilarious how you crticize the answer and yet you also don't produce any credible sources at all to support your statement that not drinking water helps with "parasitic elimination". This is possibly the stupidest thing anyone has ever said. Dry fasting is only good for destroying the kidneys, dehydrating and dying. Don't be stupid.


on October 30, 2014
at 05:03 PM

@TheGastronomer It's hilarious how you say dry water fasting destroys the kidneys without providing any evidence.  


on October 30, 2014
at 05:35 PM

@Smurfypoo12 Causes of Acute Kidney Failure - Mayo Clinic

"Diseases and conditions that may slow blood flow to the kidneys and lead to kidney failure include": 


-Severe dehydration


There's a source right there, you have yet to provide a single reputable medical source. The only one making stupid-ass claims with zero evidence here is you.



on January 23, 2013
at 07:52 AM

Dry fasting without water is absolutely dangerous to our precious health living.


on February 04, 2016
at 04:40 PM

Dry fasting can help with issues such as inflammation.  If you have any sort of long term pain such as lower back pain (myself personally), dry fasting can be quite beneficial.  Water can cause swelling around muscles, so the lack thereof can speed up recovery times.  This is much more potent than using an anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.  It's sad to see so many comments that reject the idea of a dry fast.  It is apparent that most people are ignorant to the concept.  The nice thing about fasting in general is that you can determine yourself if it will work; all you have to do is try.  Just be careful and make sure you listen to your body.  I'd recommend no more than three days as a starting point and would also recommend water fasting experience before dry fasting.


on August 16, 2013
at 04:57 AM

There are a lot of misconceptions with regards to dry fasting, as witnessed by the first 3 replies to this question. If you are already somewhat experienced with juice and/or water fasting, a 24 to 36 hour dry fast should not be that difficult, but if you have never fasted before you should not even consider attempting a dry fast - yet. You need to prepare yourself properly before dry fasting, and in my opinion, you should get used to fasting with only water or juice a couple of days a week for at least six months.

I would never recommend a person who has never so much as even skipped a meal to jump into dry fasting immediately much in the same way I would never recommend that a couch potato go out and run a marathon their first time out.

I am on the final day of a 5 day dry fast, with my longest previous one being 100 hours, and I truly feel great, but it has been a long journey to get here.

Two and a half years ago, I was 60 - 70 lbs heavier and on the fast track to a shortened lifespan. I lost that weight over a period of 5 months by first reducing my total daily calorie intake, and then by gradually incorporating alternate day fasting into my lifestyle once my weight loss had started to plateau.

Once I lost the first 40 lbs, I started training to run. My first time out I could not even run a block without being totally out of breath and exhausted. But I kept at it, and just over a year later I completed my first marathon at the age of 53.

My point is that you have no idea how much you can really accomplish in your life until you actually set a goal for yourself and then actively pursue that goal with single minded focus until it is achieved. It really boils down to how badly you want it.


on August 16, 2013
at 05:12 AM

This doesn't address why you would want to dry fast in the first place.



on March 30, 2013
at 02:16 AM

I've had some experience with dry fasting. Longest was 5 days. For me its a heck of a lot easier to dry fast then to water fast. Those inexperienced with fasting will tell you you will die and spontaneously combust if you go without food and water for 1 hour. The body kind of works on a feast or famine basis, hence why we pack on fat when food is in abundance, when there's no food fat is used as energy. Mammals tend to do that. Camels humps are fuel tanks of fat, breathing in oxygen metabolizes the fat and some H2o is created (or something like that) which is why they can go for a while without drinking. Humans do this as well. I found myself pissing like a racehorse on dry fasts and wondering were all that fluid was coming from.

Oh, try to avoid the sun/heat when on a dry fast, even on a water fast, it will drain you and beat the crap out of you.

Over at fastingconnection forums there are a lot of experienced fasters and there is quite a bit of info that can be found over there.


on January 23, 2013
at 06:36 PM

Most of what I know with fasting is that for health benefits, it causes autophagy, which leads to all the health benefits.

Essentially (in lay-mens terms), autophagy is when the cells recycle because you are not eating nutrients. They are using the stuff within the cells to create the energy they need to operate. Also, during this time, some 'garbage' or dead stuff is emptied because the cell now has time to clean out. The 'stock and store' mechanism is switched to 'survive and use the stockpile' I remember reading one article that discussed this switch in the cells:


For me, logically, it seems that since water is the foundation for all of life and iron and certain minerals are essential for carbon based life-forms, drinking a mineral water while on a fast is the best way to go for the health benefits.

For weight loss, absolutely, cut out water, you'll drop a lot of water weight in one day alone, but you'll gain it back just as fast.

for more on autophagy:




on December 19, 2012
at 12:23 PM

i dont see any logic to this, but thats just me. i would not fast if i couldn't do water;)


on August 10, 2015
at 05:47 PM

In order to reach same results with wet fasting much more time needed, what is somewhat inacceptable during modern life tempo. In addition, wet fasting gives you chills and aweful weakness steadily increasing during the entire process, whiile in dry fasting it's just temporary effect that is completed after 3-5 days, so, you are "out of service" just for 1-2 day. Beside it, you can even exersize (not intensively though). In general, you are weaker than in normal state, but not critically. First 2-3 days, intensive detoxification. Sorry, but your washrum output would be sick (and stinky). Peak of desire for water and food from responses and my experience is usually the third day. This happens due to acidosis process in body and accumulation of products of incomplete disintegration of body fats, herefrom, weakness also comes. Those 3-5 days, adaptation of biochemistry to new conditions occurs. Overall, process is similar to wet fasting and carb diet, just in shorter terms. After 5th day you would be easily able to tolerate food and less easily but still fairly can tolerate absense of water. (Note: your skin is quite hygroscopic and able to consume water in the air, tested simply by being exposed to the sun - loss 400g of weight by sweating of which I gained back 250g without any access to water during dry fast) Consumption ratio of muscle/fat tissue during wet fasting is 1:1 during dry fast changes to 1:9 with slightly reduced total amount of muscle an highly  increased amount of fat for the sake of water supply (think of camel - with thought that human body posess higher development and perfection) Then cleansing goes on cellular level. Growth hormone got actively producted by hypophysis what simulates cell reproduction and regeneration. Also, "restart and renovation" of metabolism occurs (reason why fasting and carb diet is used in healing all metabolism and biochemistry disorders such as allergies, diabetes, drug-resistant general epilepsy forms. It is also good as anti-inflammation measure since inner temperature of organism rise slightly - hooray, no aweful chills. And by the way I take only cold water shower, during dry fasting it is easier while during wet - really hard) In order to achive healing effect for light diseases those 3-5 days is enough (got just healed from strong gasrtoenteritis(temperature +39.8C) within 1.5 days, would took few days ow). This is when first non-diabetic ketoacidosis crysis happens. (In comparison, for wet fasting it is 7-9 day) It is accompanied with  disease crysis just before it, so be prepared. But in the same time, immune system got much stronger due to higher number of bactery cultures being able to act in more acidic environment of your body. Also, higher regeneration. However, for severe diseases more time is needed. 5-8 day, adaptation of body to new metabolism comes - reduction of weakness, higher tonus, reduction of hunger, though thurst might increase depending on amount of fat (skinny be cautious). The second acidotic crysis comes on 8-11 day. Again, weakness etc. Disease crysis signals about healing. First crysis removes symptoms and consequences of disease, second removes reasons, the ground of disease. Another point, that these conversions in your metabolism are largerly boosted by your conscience, since your going for fasting is conscious will act. In terms of biochemistry processes, aproximately after 20 hours of dry fasting apoptosis comes(related to mentioned autophagy). At this point body starts to work in mode of self-surgeon - programmed cell death. Selective destruction of pathologic and weak cells and cell garbage with immediate use of their organic material for purposes of reproduction and development of stronger ones. In comparison, wet fasting may achieve second crysis around 40th day, sometimes longer. (Earlier such long fasts were practiced for epilepsy treatment - I'm aware of it since it's my problem too and one of the reasons why fast. Already see effect.) In general, I haven't heard of dry fasting longer than 14 days. And this was done with slow and careful preparation and exit from it, with continuous practice of shorter dry fasting before. My father practiced earlier 7-day dry fasting regularly. Now he is 57 and desided to return to dry fasting and does it 2 times/month 4 days each. Results- weight loss, health gain. He is a doctor, specialized of physiotherapy and rehabilitation and healing gymnastics. Watching him, I've started too. For now, my longest is 5 days. Started from one day. Was not hard at all. (Especially if you cheat in a way: when you sleep, you don't feel hunger and thirst:)) Though earlier I sometimes was skipping days in terms of food for the sake of better feeling. Anyway, my point is: dry fasting is good (though I take soft dry fasting, being stinky among the people isn't appropriate, it's just maybe little more stetched comparing to strict one, though wet still can't hold any comparison to it), better than wet, but must be practices with preparation, caution, and under supervision of knowledgable, medically educated, and familiar with fasting practice person. My last point point differs from general "physician" advice, since really not much of them are familiar with that practice in Western medicine, and it is more of specialized knowledge. However, in case of specific chronic diseases, you need to do a research on reaction of it to fasting s well as consult with overlooking SPECIALIST, not physician. 


on August 08, 2013
at 11:54 PM

i m on my 3rd day dry fast and plan to go to 6 or 7 and i agree dry fast is better than water fast but you have to make sure that someone is always next to you + i m working as an abseiler and it makes it more difficult during the day.


on May 06, 2013
at 08:59 PM

I've been hearing that dry fasting results in achieving ketosis much faster (within one day instead of 3 days with water fasting). I'll be trying a 24-hour dry fast this weekend.

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